Using Spanish- and Nahuatl-language sources, this article examines the interaction of Nahua women in Mexico City with the Catholic Church. By examining Nahua women's role in colonial Christianity—their religiosity (as admired by European and indigenous chroniclers), responsibilities in convents, and participation in religious brotherhoods and theatrical performances—their influence in their society becomes apparent. Nahua women's religious responsibilities in Mexico City lay between the officially recognized positions of men in the public arena and women's private responsibilities in the home. This differed from the acknowledged authority women possessed during the precontact period. Though Nahua women suffered a loss of officially sanctioned power, they managed to create other opportunities that empowered them during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
Jonathan Truitt; Courting Catholicism: Nahua Women and the Catholic Church in Colonial Mexico City. Ethnohistory 1 July 2010; 57 (3): 415–444. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00141801-2010-004
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